The BeTheBoss.ca team recently sat down to chat with Chris and Laura Niehaus, the proud owners of a Buck or Two franchise in West Kelowna, British Columbia.
When Chris and Laura met the management team of Buck or Two it was clear they had all the elements for a successful business in place. The couple felt franchising allowed them to benefit from a business architecture that was already running like a well oiled machine. It wasn't long before Chris and Laura were enjoying the very success that had attracted them to Buck or Two in the first place. One of their greatest accomplishments as franchisees was when they beat out their fellow franchisees, winning an award for having the highest sales increase over the previous year.
We asked them, what about their experience of being their owner has taught them about business? Chris explained that: "the owner brings the ingenuity, the passion and the vision. The owner is the force, the machine behind the momentum and maneuvering through the constant changing business world". He compared his experience as a franchisee to playing chess, as a business owner he is always strategizing to be one step ahead. He explained that owning a business is very different than being an employee because you can't just 'show up' and work your 8 hours. He explained: "this business becomes very much a part of who you are and is adopted in a sense into your family".
Their typical day starts with sharing breakfast with their two children at the kitchen table. The two of them use that time to discuss the day's tasks and set a list of priorities. As a husband and wife business team, they understand that collaboration is essential for success. After breakfast, they start the day off with entering data into the computer system and assigning tasks to their staff. They are both engaged in every aspect of the business. There is always something to be done such as paying bills or blowing up balloons for a 65th birthday celebration. Both owners stock the shelves, run the tills, order product and perform daily banking runs. With a trust and competent staff in place, they leave the store around 5pm. They are proud that they can sit down as a family for dinner every evening but admit they sometimes complete additional paperwork after their children go to sleep.
BeTheBoss.ca asked them why they think they have been so successful. Laura explained that: "It is important as a business owner to invest the time to grasp how every element in your business operates". She went on to describe the great sense of responsibility she has a business owner. A franchisees both Chris and herself share the risk of the business but area completely committed to its success. She explained that successful franchisees possess an ability to adapt and remain dynamic.
The couple want to offer some advice to others looking at purchasing a franchise. Chris recommends that "when considering the decision to purchase a franchise business, individuals should consider the time investment required to be successful". He explains that your life will change and you'll need to make sacrifices (both personally and financially) in order to be successful. He recommends you ask yourself if you are prepared to make decisions that will directly affect your ability to provide for your family and the families of the people that work for you. Laura takes things one step further, recommending that you be passionate about the business you select. She suggests to be successful you need to "be that person others look up to because your happy doing what you do".
Chris and Laura ended the interview by reminding us that change is a constant in business, however with the right attitude and the solid expertise of a franchise model on your side, that success will come.